In celebration of Disability Employment Awareness Month, Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) staff recognized five outstanding Miami employers for their commitment to hiring people with disabilities.
“Individuals with disabilities contribute greatly to our communities and are integral to our state’s workforce,” said Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart. “Through the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, we are proud to connect jobseekers with disabilities to career opportunities that enable them to lead more independent lives. I hope more businesses will follow in the footsteps of today’s honorees.”
The following businesses were honored:
- Red Lobster
- Vezina, Lawrence & Piscitelli, P.A.
“We are honored to recognize these employers who are leading the way in building an inclusive workforce and looking beyond the disability,” VR Bureau Chief of Field Services, Melinda Mitchell. “Individuals with disabilities offer a broad pool of talents and tend to stay on the job longer than employees without disabilities. Given the opportunity, individuals with disabilities are able to show their skills, loyalty, and determination and become successful members of the community. Thanks to outstanding employers throughout the state, VR assisted nearly 5,000 individuals obtain or maintain employment last year. Hiring people with disabilities is a win-win for everyone!”
“We are grateful that VR understood the vision for the Work Opportunity Ventures Program and our partnership with them and The WOW Center,” said Lilian Salazar, Academica National Director of Special Education Student Support. “This program will be an enormous asset in our community and we can’t be more thankful for all the support and this partnership. There is no doubt that together we will improve the lives of so many adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.”
“Working with Vocational Rehabilitation has been a very fulfilling partnership,” said Tina D. Howell, Manger, Wingstop, Miami Gardens. “Employing individuals with disabilities and allowing them the opportunity to thrive in the work place is very rewarding.”
“Vezina, Lawrence & Piscitelli, P.A. is the recipient of very special blessings from our employment of Katron Hope,” said Joseph W. Lawrence, Shareholder, Vezina, Lawrence & Piscitelli, P.A. “He has been an integral part of our law firm family through his growth aided by the training and mentoring of The de Moya Foundation together with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and The de Moya Foundation should be applauded for its commitment on behalf of such fine men and women, like Katron, in providing them these opportunities. Although Katron may believe he has been fortunate to work with our law firm, the firm believes it has been the most fortunate in working with Katron and The de Moya Foundation in conjunction with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.”
VR is a federal-state program that is committed to helping individuals with disabilities find meaningful careers and helping employers find qualified employees. As a partner in Florida’s statewide workforce system, VR focuses on helping youth, students and adults get the skills, education and supports needed to compete in today’s labor market. VR has 96 offices across Florida, and last year helped nearly 5,000 Floridians with significant disabilities find or keep a job.
For more information about VR and its services, visit rehabworks.org.
For more information about the Florida Department of Education, visit fldoe.org.